vb – (often foll by: on) to chatter or babble pointlessly or at unnecessary length
n – pointless chat; chatter
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I recently stumbled across a fantastic interview on Joanna Penn’s blog, featuring David Gaughran, about his latest non-fic release: Strangers to Superfans. The information from the interview isn’t necessarily profound. And David says as much. He’s had a background in marketing and this is what helped him freshen his approach to marketing his books. But his ideas that he shares really struck home with me. Here’s why.
So often writer entrepreneurs get stuck in either the #amwriting mode or #ammarketing mode, that we forget to think like readers. Most of us started out as readers. Anyone who wants to grow in their craft should still be a prolific reader. You should read more than you write if you hope to grow, if you seek to challenge your mindset.
Not too long ago I swore off buying into other people’s marketing strategies. I was at a point where I found myself rereading recycled data. I wanted to take what I had already learned and apply it over the next year. But David brings up a really great point, as he talks about how we often forget to think like readers. I loved his interview so much, I bought the book. And this morning, I put some really simple advice into practice. I’ll share a wee bit here with you. But I really encourage you to check out his book, because this is genuinely good stuff 🙂
Facebook can be your friend
Most authors use a Facebook page, even though the change in company practices means our posts are rarely seen on timelines. But regardless, you should have a Facebook page, especially if you aren’t comfortable using your personal profile (which is honestly frowned upon). If you do have a page, go there now. Then, go into your Insights section and click on the tab People. This will show you what your fans look like, without naming names obviously. Who is actually looking at your page? Where are they from, what languages do they speak, and how many of them actually engage?
Here’s what mine looks like:
So what did this tell me? I have more male followers than I realized. (yay!) Also, my female demographic is exactly the age I tend to write for. (double yay!) What do I mean when I say this? Well, I’m talking specifically about your target audience. Who are you writing for? Personally, my books tend to reflect where I’m at in life at the time. While some of my main characters are younger, they’re mostly stories about women or men who are struggling to become the person they are meant to be. In many cases, they’re trying to cast off old stigmas and embrace the life they want. As a newly minted 30, I know most of my fellow gen can relate to this. So the fact my following is reflecting my target audience is a very good thing.
What surprised me was my number of Indonesian and Turkish followers (howdy from Texas y’all!). Yet another good reason to pay attention to the little details like this. Our world today is very much a digital one. We cross oceans and continents on a daily basis and aren’t always aware of the potential connections we can make.
Check out your Insights page and let’s talk shop below. Who are you writing for? Would you say your following reflects your target audience? Also, if it doesn’t, no worries. If, for example, you find out women and men in their 30’s are enjoying your YA series, roll with it. Just because Harry Potter is written from a boy’s perspective, doesn’t negate the legions of fem-fans. Likewise, just because Twilight is written for teens, doesn’t mean moms and grandmoms everywhere weren’t devouring it ten years ago. And just because classical fiction is out of style, doesn’t mean a preteen can’t enjoy Jane Eyre. Think like a reader and the kinds of books you gravitate toward. Better yet, click on the link below.
read the interview here
Coming August 17th!
Add Angel Blue to your Goodreads, or pre-order it on Amazon. 🙂
I love it thanks for posting and sharing your words! Its funny how many bloggers write 2-3 page long posts as an example. Or my favorite is the update to let everyone know they aren’t working. It’s definitely a learning process. I thank you for giving me something to think about. I’ve never thought about it as a reader. That actually will probably help with my keyword selections. Anyway I look for motivation to inspire me to finish a major painting and couldn’t get moving. I like to check out blogs to push me sometimes. Thanks for being an example of the action and movement I was looking for to complete my work!
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You’re welcome, Warren. 🙂 I don’t always keep up with my blog as I’d like to, and not every post is meant to be motivational. But I enjoy sharing what I learn along the journey, and I’m always excited to meet fellow writers. Good luck with your painting! As a former art major, I can sympathize with the struggle that comes with the creative process. My dad (a classically trained pianist) always told me how art, music, and literature are intertwined. One feeds off of and compliments the other. I’m so happy my words helped to inspire you! Happy creating 🙂
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